Chad Kruger

The Washington State Climate Advisory Team (CAT) – created in 2007 -provides suggestions, ideas, and advice to the Governor and Legislature about ways to manage human-induced climate change.  Chad Kruger, interim director of the WSU Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources, joined the team last year and has been selected to co-lead the Agricultural Sub-Committee in 2008.

“Our goal is to provide the governor and legislators with practical strategies to reduce our carbon footprint here in Washington,” Kruger said.  “We hope to provide recommendations about reducing greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels and increasing carbon storage in plants and soils.  We need to find ways to keep carbon out of the atmosphere.”

“This effort is huge in scope, impacting every aspect of our lives,” he continued.  “We need to move down the path to emission reduction, and this advisory team process seems to be a good plan.”

Last year, Kruger explained, team subcommittees provided a total of 47 proposals.  About 100 stakeholders were involved in the subcommittee work.  Those proposals were organized into a strategic framework that was presented to the state’s political administration. The Legislature then identified the highest priority ideas.

“This year, with the guidance of the Legislature, we are digging deeper into the details of some of our options,” he said.

Kruger said that he remains committed to working through the CAT process. 

“This team is really great,” he said.  “I absolutely support it.  This is the perfect outlet to promote the sustainable agricultural activities that WSU has studied for the last 30 years.”

     Jake Fey

Jake Fey, who was appointed to the team by the governor in April of 2008, shares Kruger’s upbeat assessment.

“This team approach is effective,” said Fey, director of the WSU Extension Energy Program.  Fey, a council member from the City of Tacoma, was also appointed to the Buildings and Energy Efficiency Implementation Working Group and the Growth Management Act Task Force.  “Last year, the team provided general recommendations and this year we are getting down to the specifics of what we are going to do.”

“Some of this may be painful,” he warned.  “However, this is one of the critical issues of our time.  This is very important work.  We should be proud that we are addressing this.  Washington is a leader nationwide on this issue.”

For more information on the 2008 Washington State Climate Action Team, click here